Archive for the News Category

Eric Mayson – Isolation

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, August 21, 2014 by Terry Scott Liebchen

artworks-000088723715-m1wesj-t200x200Eric Mayson- Isolation

Directly from Big Cats’ Facebook Page: “Eric Mayson is one of the most important musicians in the Twin Cities right now.
He and I recently recorded this cover of my favorite John Lennon song, Isolation.
It brings a fresh perspective to a song that’s as relevant today as it was when it was written more than 40 years ago.
Please take a moment to listen and share if it resonates with you.”

I took the opportunity to listen, and loving John Lennon, covers (in general), and being a fan of Big Cats, I thought I would share.  Have a listen to this wonderful take on a classic.  The production value lends itself a bittersweet mood, along with Eric Mayson’s powerful vocals; ‘Isolation’ is an ambient and touching song. 

Enjoy-

Red Fang at Mill City Nights

Posted in Concert Reviews, Culture, Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Local Love, Mind Inversion Exclusive, News, Reviews, The Learned Man's Take with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, June 5, 2014 by Terry Scott Liebchen

Red Fang at Mill City Nights was great… Yeah, except for the fact that Mill City Nights doesn’t allow you to take cameras within the venue. Naturally, since I infrequently contribute to a music blog I enjoy catching a show featuring one of my favorite bands, and maybe taking photos. Red Fang is absolutely about the things I love; drinking beer, partying, being broke, living in Portland (well maybe not that), and being hyper-trendy by just being original. I thought for a moment that I could get into Mill City Nights and snap some photos for a write-up; I was wrong. That is why this post has no photo.

Wednesday, June 4th, hours before the show, I sit at work watching the clock and contemplating either (a) selling the extra tickets I purchased, or (b) begging my other friends to join me. When Red Fang announced their show in Minneapolis I scooped up 6 tickets (the limit), because when Alt-J came I couldn’t have purchased enough tickets. I thought Red Fang would sell out in a heartbeat. I was wrong. I had 6 tickets and no takers. 7 pm hits, Dan texted me to let me know he had made it, he was in. I told him no worries, biked home, and put on my rocking pants and downed a rum and coke. Dan, Ryan, and Caroline showed at my house at about 7:45 pm. I was about 5 ribs deep in dinner and 3 beers down and ready to go. Meanwhile my camera battery was charging in the living room. I was prepared to get some epic shots.

8:30 pm we bike to the venue- all 4 of us, about a 1.5 mile jaunt. I bring an extra lock, we lock our bikes to a tree, and this is where the problem begins; firstly, Dan has a 3 inch pocket knife, as do I, that security over zealously locates on his person, and they lose their shit. I sell my 2 extra tickets no problem, at face value, just before I step in line to get groped. Dan’s knife is about as threatening as safety scissors. He puts it by the bikes which are locked to a tree. The security lady finds my knife. I also hide my knife next to the tree. After all of this I get back in line and I reach the security lady again, and it’s, “open the bag…” In my bag is a Sony Alpha 390, and an extra lens. The lady gives me a quizzical look and I am confused. She says, “That can’t come in, you’ll have to put it in a car.” I tell her I biked, she says “too bad”. More security converges on me, they laugh and tell me they can take care of it, but I won’t get it back. I am completely baffled. I am not allowed to take photos? Why can a paying patron at a venue not bring a digital camera within the premise? I must ask… Apparently this is Mill City Nights’ policy, unless you are press. See www.millcitynights.com/frequently-asked-questions

There was really no answer, just “those are the rules…”

I am totally blown away by this claim. I purchased my tickets, I brought in 5 other people who effectively spend money, which amplifies the business Mill City Nights generates, and I am not allowed to bring in my personal camera to document my experience. This is completely fucked. Worst service I have ever had…

Two security guards; the lady and another guy shake their heads and tell me it is impossible to get inside with my camera. Their meat-head manager is standing above them with arms crossed. He is looking on disparagingly- specifically at me, confirming a good find to his subordinates. He laughs in his salmon colored button up shirt, in his fake tan and straight teeth. He shakes his head too, and acknowledges the good work by his cronies.

I literally am confounded. I make suggestions. To everything I say the answer is “Nope.” “We just can’t do it.” The manager tells me I can request a “press pass”, “just go inside and ask for a press pass.” He says. I think: Okay, why can’t I just go inside with my camera? Surely I am not going to leave it out here with these unhelpful individuals, and my camera is not dangerous, or anything that would cause a problem. This was clearly a power trip in progress. Give some people an inch and they go a mile.

I am holding up the lines, my friends are waiting. I walk inside, I ask for a “press pass” which, of course, I am denied. I am told by the man behind the counter “sorry”. He puts his arms in the air as if that is a good enough excuse. I walk back with Dan to the security guards and their manager.

At this moment I realize there is no way I am bringing my camera in, at least in a functioning capacity. I suspect the “press pass” is for paying members of the media; I wonder what City Pages et al. pay to get the best photos. I think of how they take away competition by putting a price on it, a proper monopoly. It goes to show you who and what runs the city of Minneapolis, at least publication-wise, and I mean advertisements and currency.

Dan tries to reason with all 3, and miraculously they ponder some alternative aside from me biking home to store the camera…

The guards tell me to take my camera out of the bag so they can inspect it. They tell me because I brought an extra lens I cannot bring it inside, certainly. However, they say maybe if I take the battery out and give it to them I can keep the camera, it’s that or give up my baby. I hand over the battery, they assure me that they are not responsible for it being lost or damaged (even with it in their possession). How convenient. The guard takes my battery rendering my camera useless and won’t guarantee its safe keeping- fuckin’ thanks. Mill City Nights at its best; the worst.

The show itself was a different story. The crowd was alive and ready to go. I saw some local punk types and some out-of-towners alike. The opening act was a treat- I forget the name because of the hubbub which took place upon entry. But they played their part well.

Now, we are front and center sipping on PBR’s, naturally, and waiting in anticipation. I look in front of the gate to see some preppy kid with a Canon snapping photos. He is wearing a multi-colored button-up that his mom probably ironed before the show. To my amazement, another cameraman wearing almost identical attire steps in front of the gate as well. They are snapping like their lives depend on it! They are even escorted by security, ha! Presently, I see why I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera. These guys had it covered, they must be important. The first act ends with some drum solo a cappella bit. It was interesting. I was ready for Red Fang.

Exit first band left stage pursued by a bear- in the darkness of the room and the lights of the stage. Sound check for Red Fang goes off without a hitch. I can see every member of Red Fang plain as day. They came to rock. Some guy with dreads asks me about the camera situation, I tell him I am not with any publication- I don’t work for City Pages or Vita.mn. He is more inquisitive. I tell him I am a spy. I am here on a secret mission, almost foiled at the gate. I am sort of famous now at this show- kind of neat. He asks me about the make and model and scoots in front of me to get a better spot. He is completely confused about the camera situation. I don’t think he even cares.

Red Fang starts up. The whole show is a rush of energy. The smell of sweat and vomit creeps into my nose. They play most of my favorite songs from their first 2 records and some new ones. The crowd goes nuts. Red Fang is probably not used to seeing mosh pits, being from Portland and such. They asked the crowd if there is a problem, if we were mad at each other. The crowd settled a bit only up until the last few songs, which of course were the most noteworthy. “Wires” started the last 3 song stretch and everyone went crazy again.There was one mediocre song in the mix and then they brought it home with “Prehistoric Dog”. I was very satisfied with the performance, and the in-set banter. These guys are savvy and clever.

The set was great, both bands rocked the house. There was just enough quality music to leave satisfied. During the show I was scanning the stage watching the versatile artists, each contributing to the wall of sound. My head was sort of sideways waiting for another row of legs and bows to be thrown, but up until the final song it was subdued and comfortable.

The highlight of the night was definitely the douchiness of the staff at Mill City Nights, top-tier lameness. A one-star Yelp review is in store.

I would advise people not to bring a camera, even if they care to capture their experience (one they paid for). The staff members are not kind, not friendly, and strictly in the business to make money. Their rules are oppressive and somewhat demeaning. Not to mention it’s embarrassing to be subjected to adversities because of a camera, in front of others while the security people and manager get a boner. My camera by no means is anything super fancy. It is a point-and-shoot with a decent lens. Whatever the reason for the no-camera-policy, I think it is completely backward. As much as I want to believe it is for a logical reason the signs point to money and local publications influence of material output. I certainly can’t outdo them sans my battery. I suggest avoiding this venue outright if you believe in freedom of press, but if you must go to see a favorite act make sure you don’t bring anything for documentation purposes. Or, as they say, just get a “press pass”, especially if you want to snap some photos for fun on an amateur camera.

This snafu was on par with the T-shirt salesmen at the Converge show needing a break, I had money on hand. He was about to cry to the union. But that was another time, another story.

Homeless and Big Cats, “The Food Chain” Hungry for More

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Saturday, September 14, 2013 by Terry Scott Liebchen

What I find amazing is when I find something amazing that’s been residing in my city for some time unbeknownst to me.

 

Stuff in my city that I find amazing: the ever growing music scene, the progressive nature of citizen idea, booty shorts, and the openness of our community.  This openness gives artists a basis for starting on a path to achieve their goals, and to reach a specific and gracious audience.

 

Last night while drinking a few beverages with AKA I was introduced to an artist I had never heard before.  I became that specific and gracious audience member.

 

I mean I am into artists who go hard, I am into artists with great beats, and I am definitely into artists with flashy videos, that which still come across as true to life; however, finding an artist with all three of these qualities can be a daunting task.  Last night this task was fulfilled just by going to a friend’s house in South Minneapolis.  This friend has musically inclined acquaintances whom he put me on to.

As I have said before, I don’t really try.  Things seem to fall from the sky.

 

This night of drinks started with politics and went straight to hip-hop as usual.  He threw the Homeless and Big Cats video for “The Food Chain” on and I was taken away.  I love hip-hop that is raw, original, and moderately offensive in a clever way.  I would say that “The Food Chain” encompasses what I truly enjoy about this genre of music.

Underground Hip-Hop is not dead even if it is six feet underground, this video is testament to that.  This sound is underground.

One can truly be whatever they want to be, and then (whether on the side, or for full-time) create art which reaches a unique and expanding audience, speaking to them in esoteric ways to garner loyalty.  Someone may be a writer by day and a hip-hop mogul at night, you pick your poison.

 

This song is worth hearing.  Homeless is clever, creative, and truly relatable.  That is something I find amazing in Minneapolis.

 

I find this video addictive and at the same time incredibly real.  Real enough to want to hear more.

Alt-J First Ave Sept 7,2013; An Awesome Wave

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Sunday, September 8, 2013 by Terry Scott Liebchen

Alt-J, By Terry Scott Niebeling

Alt-J, By Terry Scott Niebeling

Alt-J blew people away at the First Ave venue last night, expectedly.  So what I will tell you is, if you can see them live, and you don’t take the opportunity, you are missing out.  Not to be presumptuous, but it’s factual-sorry.  

And that is about all I can say.  I mean I could tell you it was spiritual, it was enlightening, and it was something of a great act to witness, but you already know that.  I could really, but who is going to believe me?  It was all of those things and more.  They simply put on a great show, there is no doubt in my mind as to the reason why Alt-J sold out the Main Room both nights; not to mention the latter added date of Sept. 8th, it’s because they are truly amazing artists.  They take a simple yet classical sound and make it new, heavy, complex, and refreshing.  Seeing Alt-J makes me think of, if it were somehow possible, seeing Led Zeppelin, or Radiohead, maybe even Pink Floyd, before they became über famous/timeless, and impossible to see live. The crowd at First Ave got a stand up treat from this band on the rise.  Take the time to listen, and check them out in person.  It is something I won’t soon forget.

***

(Take in my words and the mediocre photos my Windows Phone could afford, and enjoy. That’s all you need to know.  There are more amateur camera phone photos and words below about time leading up to the show, thoughts, and lucky people getting in.)

Lord Huron opened to much delight.  Starting slow and eventually garnering enough energy to bring the lion’s share of the crowd into their set, and possibly into their loins.  I tweeted, before LH started getting a bit flashy, the tweet read something along the lines of “opening bands are like commercials while you wait for your favorite show to start.”  I could give a shit less about an opener band, especially at an Alt-J show; however, I was almost eating my words 10 minute later.  Hit me up at on Twitter:  @sirterryscott.  

How I came to love Alt-J:  

The story goes I went to smoke some with a friend after work and she would play An Awesome Wave over and over again.  One night I caught on, I said, “Play that song again.”  She did, then I inquired as to who and what they were.  I was amazed.  She had ripped the song from a torrent and sent me a downloaded copy.  I never actually used what she had sent me, I was occupied with pressing play and repeat play on Youtube, of Breezeblocks.  In turn I had found out the meaning to the song, and I had become entranced by the harmony, wave of sound, and sonic power of Alt-J.  89.3 The Current started playing one, then two, then three of their songs.  Now they play most of the album.  A friend later Facebook messaged me and gave me the scoop on the First Ave show.  Knowing they would sellout the venue I waited til the moment they became available, and then I made my purchase.  I should have bought 6, the limit, but I bought 3 instead.  I could have doubled my money.  I didn’t have enough dough that day though.  A few hours later all of the tickets were gone and I sat in satisfaction at my quick choice.  And that is how I got into the show.

By Terry Scott Niebeling

Putting up the Triangles, By Terry Scott Niebeling

Standing outside in line people came up to me asking for tickets.  The interesting thing was there weren’t really any scalpers, but there were people asking for tickets.  A show so coveted that people bought the tickets for themselves and actually went to see good music.  Wow, some tickets online were as much as $200.  It must have been 5 people walked up and inquired.  By this time I had already bummed two cigarettes and a RedBull from some complete strangers ahead of me in line.  I was feeling great waiting in line at 7:30 pm, plenty of time to take in the hot night.  At home earlier while indulging in homework and horror films I sat on the couch sweating in our AC lacking one bedroom apt.  The fan blew its best, but it didn’t really help.  Sweat beaded and crawled down my face.  I changed my shirt a few times.  I took a shower and brushed my teeth.  I spoke German.  And then I went to wait in line.

????????????????????

With the extra two tickets I felt almost over prepared, which by my standards is almost impossible.  I waited until the day before to start the bidding.  Three people in all contacted me.  The tickets went to the most passionate.  Also, a few people whom I spoke with were too intimidated to bid on them, so I figured they must not have wanted to go really.

The lucky guests I brought drove two hours to get here on word of a promise to get tickets.  I thought of them as I waited in line.  I asked those who inquired about extra tickets how much they would pay.  They wouldn’t say, I am not sure if they got in.  I was about 15ft from the door when my guests arrived.  They were in disbelief, literally exalted at the idea they would see a band they loved.  Having been burned twice before T. was so happy.  I think as we came closer to actually getting in her spirits piqued.  She handed me the money the moment she arrived.  I enjoyed this.  The sky was pink, the line was long, and the day was cooling off.  Heat became a friend of every nook, cranny, and crevasse throughout the city proper.  The bike ride and the light material of my black button up were comforting.  The sunset stood aglow over the Hennepin Ave Bridge as I crossed 3rd Ave, over the Mississippi, past pedestrians, and aside cars.  A glacier like cloud hung over the sun; a sort of arrowhead array of bright lights contrasting with deep purple clouds shadowing certain parts for quiet a large puppet show etched across the darkening horizon.  A line of clouds, directly above, shown soft and full, as they slipped through the sky.  Planes took off going in two different directions.  I biked South-ish to First Ave. to wait in line.  I watched the ground below slide past; rocks and broken glass reflected on how they had come to where they lie.  They watched all appreciatively as I went by.  

Alt-j set list. Talk to your boy.

 

I was just biking to see a band I had wanted to see since I first heard a song.  

Hyphon Illuminates My Day, and Opens My Mind

Posted in Art, Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Local Love, News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Tuesday, August 20, 2013 by Terry Scott Liebchen

Blake Auler Hyphon Murphy

Waking up this morning, after the run and such, I was brought to a smile by something I so effortlessly had stumbled upon.  The smile was from understanding, and newly rediscovering what artistry and creativity had been harboring in my hometown area.  I found an artist I had been following for sometime, I had reintroduced my ears to Hyphon.

I was intrigued and pleasantly surprised.

I did something, just a click, and sat back to listen.  I found myself mesmerized for the next couple of minutes, and  in a better way, more open-minded to my surroundings.  I thought of Hyphon’s lyrics, I felt at a coffee shop, reading a book, I felt the general idea of expanding my mind, my situation, and my musical diversity.  I felt comforted at the sound of growth, at the use of imagination, and something even more, a piece of La Crosse, at an artist from my birth place stretching the boundaries and producing a unique sound that I could feel comfortable listening to anywhere.

I had been sitting on this song, and then we realize hesitation kills.  I had been forgetful when thinking about time I had spent perusing the ever interactive internet, the time we all had spent.  I found myself listening to a song by Hyphon, I found myself satisfied with the lyrics (use of words, vocab), sound, and production.  He is an acquaintance, an artist, and he has motivated me today, especially, to search for more.  To indulge in what we would normally pass up.  I invite you to click and listen.  You will be taken somewhere, and wherever it is, at least you went.  We all go learning something new along the way, learn today that there is artistry everywhere, especially in La Crosse.  All one has to do is open their ears-have a listen.

I have probably said enough, maybe not, but you do owe yourself a listen.  It is worth your time.

Hyphon-A Shapely Sign of Things to Come

Hyphon brings a bureau of words, ideas, and deep imagery, true underground, fresh…

Listen to this in the morning with coffee, and prepare to have your thoughts provoked.

Summerfest 2013: The Lineup Returns to Championship Form

Posted in Music News, News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, April 18, 2013 by Eric Gilardi

image

One of the greatest music festivals in the world recently returned as a championship contender when they released their lineup for 2013. Lately, the festival seemed to rely mainly on its prestige alone. After all, it is a festival that spans over 11 days and has more than 800 acts performing on 11 different stages. The festival is a vision of the great late mayor of Milwaukee, Henry Maier, who wanted a massively relative festival that would compare to the joyous Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany. He started the tradition that became Summerfest in 1968.

The lineup has been lacking the innovative music that the youth and many more have gravitated towards in recent years. This year after they released their headliners at the Marcus Amphitheater I had mixed feelings. So I was a little skeptical when I received the E-mail that their complete lineup was out but said, “What the hell” and clicked the link. To my astonishment, I was really impressed. One thing that stuck out in my mind was that they got some major electronic, Indie rock and alternative rock acts. All whom are currently relevant in their respected industries. This list includes Pretty Lights, Diplo, Empire of the Sun, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Yeasayer and MGMT. They did this while still including a lot of the older talent (Alice Cooper, 311, Foreigner and Billy Idol) and mixing in many more talented up and comers.

Another thing you have to appreciate about Summerfest is the variety of music that they bring to the many ears attending the festival. They have done a great job blending country, pop, blue grass, electronic, rock and even a little bit of hip hop into the lineup. A few other artists that would be worth seeing are: Capital Cities, Atmosphere, Trampled by Turtles, Robert Delong, Matt & Kim, AWOLNATION, Imagine Dragons, Taliban Kweli and Cake. If you are the least bit interested after reading this head over to summerfest.com/lineup for a complete listing of this year’s lineup.

The D.O.T.-How We All Lie

Posted in Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Mind Inversion Exclusive, Music News, News, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on Friday, April 12, 2013 by Terry Scott Liebchen

After Mike Skinner put The Streets to rest after 5 albums I didn’t think I would hear much from the bloke.  I waited for some time, and nothing…  I followed Skinner on his blog http://mikeskinner.so and watched for him to put out something new.  Nothing happened…  I mean, there were some new posts and interesting photos, and words, but no music.  And then-a few months back, I became aware that I was literally on Mike Skinner’s personal emailing list.  A message popped up from one of my favorite anti-mainstream mainstream artists.  I had received an email from the man as if he had risen from the grave.  I was bestowed upon some great and inspiring new sound.  Kaboom!

And here it is in video form incase you missed it.  (above)

This catchy tune takes a few listens to warm up to.  You know I am crazy, so I sat around all day banging this shit out on loud, macbook style.  My GF got a little mad, by the end I was singing along (out of tune of course) and getting scolded.  I felt I knew the song and the artist a little more, I felt there was promise in this new material.  May I say I am a bit excited for the full length album?  I felt the video was entertaining (I had heard about this filming technique in Boulder, CO).  After listening to this song, and viewing the innovative video, I realized that what The D.O.T. was doing was actually pretty good.  I felt the same emotion that I had gotten from a lot of The Streets’ albums after the first and second listen, “Cult classic, not bestseller”.  But sales don’t matter, the sound is important, and this song is very catchy and has an incredibly memorable melody.  I woke this morning singing the chorus.

Before this message from Mike Skinner, I had little knowledge of The D.O.T., I assumed Skinner produced the songs.  I had no idea who the singer was.  So let me fill you in:

The D.O.T. Official Website

They have some interesting videos, venue tickets, downloadable songs, and other merchandise.

The D.O.T. project’s site is visually appealing and artsy, while remaining easy to navigate.

In all honesty I love how abstract and collectively cool Skinner is overall; most (universally), if not all of The Streets’ material is exceptionally well made, as Chuck Klosterman wrote-he (Skinner) is ‘advanced’ as an artist.  The music he puts out is real and relatable, there is an essence of humanity within his lyrics and delivery.  Also, Rob Harvey, of The Music, sounds great on vocals, and harmonizes well with Skinner.  At times I feel that Skinner wants to put more vocals into the song; however, it sounds pleasant the way it is presented.

Happily I am intrigued and I want to hear more.  If you could hook it up with a free CD, Mr. Skinner, that would be excellent, pre-release if possible???  Thanks.

Watch out for The D.O.T.’s new album “Diary” due to drop May 6, 2013.

Because Geezers truly need excitement.

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